Saturday, 20 December 2014

Interview With Author Rohini Singh

I have an interview up today, with the interesting writer, Rohini Singh, author of the science fiction novel, The Time Manipulator's Son...

Interview With Rohini Singh

Why don’t you begin by sharing a little about yourself.

I am the first female science fiction writer from the island of Trinidad in the Caribbean.  I have a BSc in computing and I have been employed in the Information Technology field for over eleven years now in the area of software development, web and database development and administration.

You've recently release a science fiction novel, The Time Manipulator's Son. Can you tell us a bit about the book?

The book is for pre-teens to young adults. I have introduced a brand new world in a distant galaxy, where the sky is a different colour each day of the week. Species such as biclopses, flykinds, steamhounds, blockheads, and earthlings (including Trinidadians) all coexist under two and a half moons.

The story line centers around three twelve year old boys who were considered outcasts among their peers. These boys came together under unusual circumstances to solve a mystery. This union helped these boys to accept themselves for who they are and they were able to overcome their differences, hence the book touches on the sensitive and worldwide subjects of bullying and diversity. 

The book was rated as a #1 Hot New Release on

What is it, as a writer, that appeals to you most about the science fiction genre?

As a child, I was always fascinated by the diverse worlds and realities that go beyond the boundaries of reality, where anything is possible.  I especially admire the works of Gene Roddenberry.

When writing The Time Manipulator's Son, did you find anything about the process surprising or difficult?

Writing the book was not difficult for me. The plot came quite easily after looking at some of the young students at a high school where my sister was a teacher.  The idea popped into my head: what if kids of different species came together for a common cause in an alternate world?

Do have any interesting facts or stories to tell about the book, or an anecdote about writing it?

The book features the culture, language, folklore and food from Trinidad.  These were incorporated into a futuristic world and I also mirrored our multi-cultural society.     

What is your greatest challenge as a writer, and as an author?

Building an audience with social media was my biggest challenge, especially since I was never active in social media before. Also, reaching the younger readers was not available through social media.

Who has inspired you as an author?

Enid Blyton, Stephen King, Ray Bradbury, Jules Verne, Michael Crichton. Authors from Trinidad include, Michael Anthony, Samuel Selvon and Vidya Naipaul.

What do you enjoy when you’re not busy writing?

Looking at football (English, Spanish and Italian league championships), reading, and taking in a good movie.

What’s next for you?

Hopefully, to continue writing a four part series in “The Time Manipulator’s Son”. I already have the plots for each of the books planned out. 

You can find more about the author and her books at her website: 

Or on Facebook: 

The Time Manipulator’s Son is available on Amazon:

Friday, 19 December 2014

Christmas Lites IV for Charity

Today I have the spotlight on the charity anthology, Christmas Lites IV. I'm one of the authors included in this wonderful book, (with a steampunk tale, The Professor's Christmas Ghost, about ghost hunting in an orphanage), and all the proceeds are being donated to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence.

Christmas Lites IV

Help support the NCADV (The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence) by diving into 20 delectably wonderful Christmas tales told by authors from all over the world. Go on a space adventure, meet a demon with a heart not quite made of gold, find true love, discover a serial killer and much more. Every dime of your purchase goes to help support the victims of domestic violence. Enjoy your holiday even more knowing your purchase benefits so many people in this special time of year!

Stories by:

Ron C. Nieto
Phil Cantrill
Mysti Parker
Vered Ehsani
Tricia Kristufek
Jonathan Tidball
JA Clement
K.A. Davur
Frank W. Smith
Mark Mackey
Addison Moore
Amy Eye
Monica La Porta
S. Patrick Pothier
Anne Sanders
MaryMargret Tucker
A.F. Stewart
D.T. Dyllin
Angela Yuriko Smith
Brandon Eye

The book is available on Amazon and Smashwords

And here's a little video I whipped up for my contribution to the anthology:

Thursday, 18 December 2014

Book Spotlight: Broken People

Today, another book comes into the spotlight, as I present the cyberpunk novel Broken People by Ioana Visan. Enjoy.

Broken People by Ioana Visan

You don’t always get what you want, but if you’re lucky, you might get what you need.

For one week only, an impenetrable castle is open to the public, and Dale Armstrong has come to Bratislava to rob it. When he finds his partner’s arms mangled, he desperately searches for a way to fix him before time runs out.

Because the war in the Far East is sapping all the allied nation’s resources, only The Nightingale Circus has the spare parts, the power, and the expertise to fix prosthetics and help the injured, but nothing is free.

Unfortunately, Dale doesn't know about The Nightingale Circus’s side job, but a forced encounter with the most dangerous woman in the city, the Golden Lady, sends him their way. On this roller coaster of crazy twists and flips, schemes and deceit, wishes and dreams, no one can foresee how the aerialist will land.

Anything is possible in a world of Broken People.

Broken People can be found on Amazon: 

Author Bio:

Award-winning writer Ioana Visan has always dreamed about reaching the stars, but since she can't, she writes about it.

After fighting the apocalypse aftermath in "Human Instincts", she played with shapeshifters in "Blue Moon Café Series: Where Shifters Meet for Drinks", she dealt with vampires in "The Impaler Legacy" series, and then she designed prosthetics in "Broken People" before tackling longer works like a fantasy trilogy and a science fiction series.

Aside from publishing short stories in various Romanian magazines and anthologies, she published a Romanian short story collection "Efectul de nautil" and the Romanian edition of "Human Instincts".

She received the Encouragement Award from The European Science Fiction Society at Eurocon 2013.

You can find out more abut the author and her books at these sites:

Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Drabble Wednesday: Holiday Cheer

I’m bringing that strange festive touch to the blog this Drabble Wednesday, with a variety of odd Holiday themed bits of short fiction. Plus, when you've finished reading, there's an opportunity to win a free book at the end of the post. Enjoy.

First up some flash fiction, two stories about the danger of holiday parties…

Don’t Touch the Eggnog

Spiking the eggnog was a bad idea.  A very bad idea.
I just wanted to liven the family Christmas party, get the aunts, the uncles, the cousins, and the siblings to loosen up a bit.  Who knew a few of dollops of rum would have such an effect!

Aunt Lucy was the first to go, climbing onto the coffee table to do the Can-Can.  Oh, the memory of that will haunt me forever.  Uncle George chimed in with some French song I didn't understand and then transitioned into “Who Let the Dogs Out”.

From there everything spun out of control.  Cousin Fred curled into a human ball and kept calling for someone named Daphne. My brother Dave and my other brother Daryl played keep-away with the porcelain Santa and my sister Jane started a food fight with the rest of my cousins. Aunt Jessica kept muttering “he’s dead” and something about a cove, while Uncles Bob and Bert got into a fistfight.

By the time they all passed out, the drapes were cover in pate and cream cheese, Santa was shattered with pieces embedded in the floor, the coffee table was missing a leg, two uncles had black eyes and someone vomited over the ficus.  I can see Boxing Day will be spent making hangover cures and apologising.

I've learned my lesson.  That’s the last time I take advice from Mom and Dad.

Never Put Your Pate Near The Blender

Everyone loved Bob’s New Year’s Eve parties.  He never invited too many people and his house had a good view of the fireworks in the Town Square.  He always had tons of food and his New Year’s cocktails were famous around town.  He was responsible too; you could stay the night if you didn't have a designated driver or afford cab fare home.  Bob never let anyone drink and drive.

That’s why everybody from Harrisville and the surrounding area mourned him the year he had the fatal accident...

It was the year he decided to serve Margaritas.  He usually saved them for the Fourth of July party, but that year he changed the menu, serving Sangria instead at the Independence Day barbecue.

It happened in the kitchen while he was  mixing drinks in the blender.  No one is certain precisely how it happened, but the end of his tie fell unnoticed in the liquid as he prepared the ingredients. What is known is that Bob’s cat leapt on the cupboard (the police concluded the feline was after the salmon pate) and her paw hit the puree button on the blender. It was over in minutes, the tie catching in the blade, Bob’s face turning purple, his breath choking in his throat.  He collapsed to the floor in a mess of margarita mix and broken blender.

Now, on every New Year’s Eve in Harrisville we all raise a cocktail and give a toast to Bob. And curse the salmon pate.

And now for our feaure drabbles…

A Fairy Tale Christmas Story

Once upon a time, far from the land of BB guns, there was me, Rutherford B. Hasenpheffer, and like all boys (aged 6-12) I had a Christmas wish. I wanted a dragon (yes, you heard me, a dragon), one legendary, fire-breathing, winged lizard.
I badgered my parents night and day for a year, following them around the castle, begging for a dragon. “No,” they said. Repeatedly. Consistently. But I persisted, until somewhere around November they relented. So I found a baby dragon under the Christmas tree.
The only problem, the darn beast burned down the castle and now we’re homeless.

An Out of This World New Year

After I mentioned the polka-dotted aliens, Jean insisted she had to see green snow, so I hovered the spaceship (shaped like a streetcar and named Desire) from the garage, and we flew to their planet. We arrived in time for their Lunar Ice Festival and celebrated the New Year dressed in lavender thermal fusion snowsuits and fuzzy party hats, drinking alien hooch.
Unfortunately, the morning found us five light-years from Earth in a bizarre hotel suite full of passed out aliens, Jean with a new pink comet tattoo and me with a raging hangover.
We’re never drinking Romulan Ale again.

And here’s a bonus half-drabble…

Broken Lights

I just couldn't take my husband’s criticism of my decorating skills anymore.  I wrapped the cord around his neck, strangled him and watched his face turn red as he gasped for air.  At least I finally found a use for that broken set of Christmas lights I never threw away.

Now on to the chance to win a free ebook.

I'm offering to gift one of my ebooks from Smashwords (winner's choice) to any person who lists one of the TV shows subtly referenced in the above stories.  All you have to do is leave a comment with the show's name, and some way to contact you if you win (such as an email, Twitter account, Google+ profile, etc.).   Here's a hint: you can find the answers in Don’t Touch the Eggnog, A Fairy Tale Christmas Story, and An Out of This World New Year. You have until Dec. 23rd to win, and the winners will be posted on Dec. 24th, the Christmas Eve edition of Drabble Wednesday.

You can check out my list of books on my Smashwords profile:

Saturday, 13 December 2014

Book Spotlight: Winterreise

I have another book spotlight today, plus an excerpt. This time the book is a fantasy, the urban fairy tale, Winterreise, brought to you by Daphne du Bois writing as Emily de Courcy. Enjoy...

Winterreise by Emily de Courcy

Life in the old city of Aldgard is (almost) never boring...

When music student Penny Wells first met the Erlking, she had an inkling that trouble would follow. Especially since she had a thesis to write and concert to prepare for, and she definitely didn’t have time for magic.

So it really stands to reason that Penny should have known better that to stroll into the Hinterlands to return a strange locket he’d left behind – because nothing is ever accidental when it comes to the Erlking.

And when she does so anyway and awakens an ancient sleeper, seriously annoying the Norse Gods (well, most of them), she finds that she has to set things right before they use her new friend for their upcoming ritual sacrifice. Because Penny won’t stand for that.

But first, she has to figure out what it is they’re really worried about and what all of it has to do with a Schubert song cycle that the Aldgard University music department will be putting on in just a matter of weeks...

Excerpt from Chapter 1

The Erlking drank his coffee black, no sugar.
Penny rather thought he’d have done better with herbal tea, given his tendency to be neurotic. It would certainly have helped with the twitching. Anyway, there was likely no coffee under the hills, so it was a wonder he’d developed a taste for it at all, never mind mastering the art of drinking it without wincing.
They were at the local coffee shop: the kind with squashy couches and rickety tables. It had pale wooden panels on the walls, and Wilhelm, the owner, was a troll. Nobody knew this, of course, except for the Erlking, and Penny, who was rather good at eavesdropping.
Wilhelm disguised himself with clever bits of enchanted spider silk to make him appear human, but given the standard mortal tendency to ignore the unusual, this was hardly necessary. Mortals generally kept the uncanny at bay by pointedly ignoring it: that way, the barely seen world often passed entirely unseen.
Wilhelm used to own a tavern in the Hinterlands: The Broken Keg, it had been called. But owning a tavern was a rough business, even for a troll: no-one had appreciated his secret-recipe strawberry shortcake, and taverns were astonishingly flammable no matter how much magical fire-proofing you did.
When some rowdy dwarfs had trashed The Keg in a bar fight of epic proportions, Wilhelm had decided he’d had enough. His gnomish nurse, who had refused to move on once Wilhelm had reached adulthood, had always said he wouldn't be any good at tavern-keeping. “A job for dimwits and scoundrels!” she would proclaim, while taking a fierce swig of his father’s finest fire wine. Gnome women made the best nurses, not because of any silly instinct, but because of their no-nonsense approach to gnome-rearing, and their wonderful baking.
Wilhelm had considered his options, decided that his nurse had made a valid point after all, and moved camp to the mortal side. Stepping between worlds was a surprisingly easy thing to do, Penny realised upon hearing his story.
She knew that there was a doorway to the fairy realms quite nearby, going on what Wilhelm had once let slip. Penny imagined the door to be mystical and glittery: maybe hidden somewhere deep within an ancient oak tree. It went quite well with the overall ‘old stone and ivy’ medieval-town atmosphere of Aldgard University.
Not that she had much time to think about magical portals and the like. She had two essays due that week, one of which was a monstrous thing on the development of fifteenth century French harmonic practices. She definitely didn't have time for any portals just then…

Winterreise can be found here:

(Note: the Amazon link should take you to whichever Amazon you use worldwide )

Author Bio:

Daphne has always had a passion for literature and history and one day it occurred to her: what better way to use her English Literature degree than to write the kinds of stories she loves to read? She hasn't looked back since.
Daphne also writes lyrical fantasy under the pen name Emily de Courcy, and who knows where she'll branch out next!

Daphne has stacks of notebooks full of stories that still need to be written, which she insists on bringing with her when she moves around the world (she’s done this a lot!). She likes her books full of romance, magic, adventure, witty repartee and a dash of silly humour. When Daphne isn't writing, she can be found painting, picnicking, reading and listening to all sorts of exciting music.